Meet The 10 Cutest Giraffes In The World

Written by Heather Hall
Published: November 29, 2022
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Giraffes are some of the most fascinating animals on earth. They are both the largest ruminant animal on earth and the tallest living terrestrial species. No other animal looks quite like a giraffe, with its long neck, gangly legs, and horn-like protrusions on its head. Giraffes have beautiful spotted coats with various blotches of orange, chestnut, brown, black, white, and cream. They can be up to 19 feet tall and weigh 2,628 pounds. 

Giraffes like to eat leaves, fruits, and flowers. Their favorite species to munch on is acacia, which is tasty and grows to the perfect height. They live on savannahs and woodlands and live in herds. There are thought to be less than 100,000 giraffes alive in the wild. 

1. Masai Giraffe

Giraffe Facts - Giraffe neck
Masai giraffes have a star-like pattern of blotches on their coat.


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The Masai giraffe (Giraffa tippelskirchi) is also called the Kilimanjaro giraffe. It is native to eastern Africa and is known for a coat with a star-like pattern of blotches that reach from its hooves clear up to its horns. Masai giraffes are tall, running 18 feet high, and one-third of that height is all neck! They are also heavy, coming in at a hefty 1,300 pounds. 

Masai giraffes have a long lifespan of 30 years in the wild. Can you believe they can run up to 40 miles per hour? The Masai giraffe’s tongue is 20 inches long! And that long tongue is black. Wow!

2. Northern Giraffe

Northern Giraffe
The northern giraffe has three horns.

©Jane Rix/

The northern giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis) is native to northern Africa and lives in shrublands and savannahs. This super cute animal has three horns (males) that are three to five inches long. These horns are called ossicones and are boney structures covered in skin. They are similar to the antlers of some other animals, except giraffe horns are permanently covered in skin and contain lots of blood vessels running throughout. They are attached to the giraffe’s head by sensitive nerves. 

3. Reticulated Giraffe

Reticulated Giraffe, Africa, Animal, Animal Wildlife, Animals In The Wild
It is common to find reticulated giraffes in zoos.


The reticulated giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis reticulata) is also called the Somali giraffe. It is native to the Horn of Africa and lives in savannas, floodplains, and rainforests. It has a super cute coat with a large blocky pattern of reddish brown spots outlined in bright white. Less than 9,000 reticulated giraffes are left in the wild, and several organizations are making every effort to save them. 

4. Southern Giraffe

Southern Giraffe
Southern giraffes have a tawny brown background color with darker spots.

©Wim Hoek/

The southern giraffe (Giraffa giraffa) is also called the two-horned giraffe. It is native to southern Africa. They have lovely coats with blotches that look like stars. Their coat is a light tawny brown color with contrasting darker spots for excellent camouflage. The spots get smaller and smaller as they go down the giraffe’s legs. Southern giraffes live in savannahs and woodlands, where they can find acacia trees to eat. There are an estimated 44,500 individuals left in the wild. 

5. Angolan Giraffe

Angolan Giraffe
Angolan giraffes have white patches on their ears.

©Art Konovalov/

The Angolan giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis angolensis) is also called the Namibian giraffe because it is found in northern Namibia. These giraffes definitely deserve a spot on the world’s cutest giraffes list! They have large spots with edges that are angular and irregularly shaped. Their spots extend down the legs, but their faces are not spotted. They also have cute white patches on their ears. The spots on their necks and bodies are very large and get smaller as you move toward the rump. The Angolan giraffes’ favorite food is a flowering plant called Commiphora, which is related to frankincense and myrrh. There are 13,000 Angola giraffes left in the wild. 

6. South African Giraffe

South African giraffe
. The spots of South African giraffe stand out brightly and are edged in cream.

©Stefan Scharf/

The South African giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis giraffa) is also called the cape giraffe. Just like its name implies, you can find them in South Africa. These giraffes are certainly super cute. They have a light tan coat covered in darker reddish-brown spots of irregular shapes. The spots stand out brightly and are edged in cream. Their spots continue down their legs and get smaller as they go down. Like all giraffes, South African giraffes are herbivores who love munching on flowers, fruits, shoots, and leaves. There are believed to be approximately 37,000 South African giraffes left in the wild. 

7. Nubian Giraffe

Nubian Giraffe
The undersides of Nubian giraffes are spotless.


The Nubian giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis camelopardalis) was widespread across northeastern Africa in the past, living in woodlands and savannahs. But over the last 30 years, we have seen a 95 percent decline in their populations. There are believed to be less than 2,000 Nubian giraffes alive in the wild. They definitely deserve a spot on the world’s cutest giraffes list. Nubian giraffes have a gorgeous chestnut coat with spots surrounded by bright white lines. Their underbelly does not always have spots and is sometimes a lovely solid cream color. They are known to have front legs that are very lengthy, giving them a long stride and helping them to run over 30 miles per hour. 

8. Kordofan Giraffe

The Kordofan giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis antiquorum) is certainly cute. The Kordofan giraffe is a smaller subspecies of giraffes, coming in at only 12 to 15 feet tall. Their coat is a lovely cream or white, covered in triangular-shaped spots that get lighter in color and smaller as they go down the leg. Their spots usually only extend to the knee, and their lower legs are often spotless. They have long dainty faces with an incredibly small pattern of spots. There are thought to be only 2,000 Kordofan giraffes left in the wild. 

9. West African Giraffe

Giraffa camelopardalis peralta
West African giraffes are characterized by lightly colored spots.


The West African giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis peralta) is also called the Nigerien giraffe. They are found in the hot semi-arid areas of western Africa. These giraffes have a few plants they love to eat, including Acacia trees, gingerbread trees, and wild soursops, to name only a few. They are characterized by their lightly colored spots that are a muted shade of brown and cream. Their lower legs and face are bright white, and the tips of their tails are dark brown. In the 1990s, the West African giraffe nearly went extinct, with only 95 left in the wild. Due to intense conservation efforts, there are now an estimated 500 remaining. 

10. Baby Giraffes

baby giraffe
Baby giraffes begin to walk within an hour after birth.


Ok, we know this isn’t exactly a type of giraffe. But who better to end the world’s cutest list with than a baby giraffe? Baby giraffes weigh 150 pounds when they are born and are a whopping six feet tall. Their mamas are pregnant for over a year (15 months) and give birth standing up. When they are born, the baby giraffe falls all the way to the ground and is up and walking within an hour. That is amazing!

Baby giraffes are born looking very much like miniature versions of adult giraffes, with their own set of horns folded flat against their tiny heads. They walk beside their mothers and live entirely off of their mothers’ milk for the first four to six months of their lives. After that, they start supplementing their diet with tender shoots and leaves. Often their moms will drop leaves down for the babies to reach and teach them which trees taste the best.

Within year number one, baby giraffes are double in size and are now around twelve feet tall. Females with calves tend to stick together and form their own herd, with the babies staying close to their mothers for nearly two full years.

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Reticulated Giraffe, Africa, Animal, Animal Wildlife, Animals In The Wild
Giraffes are a sight to behold.

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About the Author

I am a freelance writer with 22 years of experience. I live in the Pacific Northwest and am surrounded by nature. When I go for my daily runs I often see herds of elk, deer, and bald eagles. I am owned by two dogs who take me on hikes in the mountains where we see coyotes, black bears, and wild turkeys.

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